Cosplay, short for costume play, involves dressing up as characters, often but not exclusively, from animated films, video games or comics. While many fans make their own, the manufacture of Cosplay costumes is a multi-million-dollar industry in Japan.
Osaka – Photo Tip

The perfect place for street photography is Osaka, Japan

Photo by Ton Koene

Osaka – Photo Tip The perfect place for street photography is Osaka, Japan

Of all the countries I have visited, Japan is definitely the most organized society. People are polite, quiet and the rules are followed seemingly without question.

Ton Koene
Ton Koene Travel Photographer

It is pleasant and safe to walk around Osaka and its people are willing to be photographed. In fact, most youngsters are happy and proud to be approached.

"Why would a foreigner want to take a picture of me?" I see them thinking. Well, I think to myself, because you are an adult woman dressed in a schoolgirl's uniform. Or because you wear stockings that a prostitute in my country would think twice to be seen in.

Although Japan is a very organized country, or perhaps because it is sometimes over-organized, lots of youngsters rebel against the established order. They dress differently and often go way overboard, like the punks in 1980s Europe. But that makes them interesting to photograph

Manga characters – living re-creations from comic books – walk around in public in Osaka. It seems completely normal to dress in a space uniform with a purple cape; nobody looks twice. Such total acceptance is a real contrast to the average office worker's dress code. This quirky phenomenon makes Osaka, Japan absolutely great for street photography.

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